Friday, 23 June 2017

Making Better Decisions

It is Friday and time to do what so many do on the last day of the working week and reflect on the week that was.

The theme that appears to dominate the week is that of “decision making”.

We are constantly making decisions. What to do, when to do it, why we do this and should we do that? But, how many decisions do we make “truly consciously”?

I got to thinking about the benefit of having an underpinning philosophy to fall back on when making decisions.

How often do we hear someone say “I had no choice”?

Have you ever heard the reference to having “no choice” used in a positive way? It is always used as an excuse for a decision made that will have certainly impacted another in what others perceive is a less than positive way.

It is an excuse, a cop out, a refusal to accept responsibility.

If we have an underlying philosophy or belief system, we need never make an excuse for a decision or it’s resulting action. This doesn’t mean a decision or action we take will be greeted with universal approval. It just means we can explain our actions and do so with conviction.

You might call it a life with purpose and meaning,

I had a meeting first thing on Monday morning. We discussed a number of things, life, business, family, you might say the universe in general. My colleague was suggesting the single biggest thing that could be done to help others would be the creation of a framework to facilitate the making of better decisions.

We explored this idea a little more. What was interesting is the quality of a decision we make individually, is inevitably subjected to the judgement of others and it is this judgement that we pay too much attention too.

The outcome of this is, we will allow our decision making to be prejudiced by our perception of how others will judge us, therefore compromising what matters to us.

In order to make better decisions, we must first be able to identify, adopt and believe in a frame work that we can reference when making any decision.

I may want to be healthier, more energetic and more engaged with my family. Making a decision to have a few drinks after work tonight (Friday) and grab a burger on the way home is not going to deliver the desired outcome of being healthier and more engaged. I am not going to wake in the morning as the best version of myself that I can be.

However, I will have satisfied the need of my work colleagues to be seen as one of the team letting my hair down after a long week. If I am committed to my framework, I would have made better decisions, and had a basis for making the decision.

So, to my colleagues question, how do you help people make better decisions, better choices?

As always, no two people are the same and no two people have the same objectives. Providing the framework to determine what we want and then providing the basis to make decisions in accordance with that framework, irrespective of outside pressure and prejudice is the challenge and the solution.

Easy really.

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